WSL 2 is almost here! and if you are here, reading this post. Please consider reading about WSL 2
During one of the recent chit-chats, few of my contacts were asking me about the “real” business sense behind Linux on Windows. It is simple. Microsoft is:
Going to integrate LINUX so deep within Windows that, in the very near future, one don’t have to run a separate LINUX Server. Simple like that.
After experimenting with KALI Linux WSL, I managed to install Xfce & XRDP on Ubuntu 18.04 WSL & the only few things I couldn’t do with the WSL was starting services automatically when the subsystem starts. There are hacks, well, I don’t think they really worth a try soon as Microsoft will BE bringing it on to WSL pretty soon.
Now, let us get back to the topic. I’ve installed Ubuntu 18.04 WSL nothing less than half dozen times. Every time something goes wrong & I am forced to uninstall and re-install the WSL to continue with additional experiments. My last attempt was to install Kubuntu desktop, that screwed my Xfce & after 2 days of continuous efforts to “fix” few “unknown” things, I had to uninstall one Ubuntu WSL that had a fully functional WordPress instance :(
So, I decided to learn how to backup a functional WSL, so that if something goes wrong, I can restore & continue
I’ve ready at few places that Windows 10 version 1903 comes with WSL backup functionality out of the box. Until you decide to upgrade your box to 1903, you may use the below for backing up your dear WSL instance.
I came across a pretty decent thread here & a user Jaime’s answer is the apt ONE, missing only few details like /tmp folder.
Where /mnt/c is C:\> drive of your Windows Machine. You may change /mnt/c/ to /mnt/d/ or /mnt/e/, based on how your partitions are laid. Closely watch the excluded directories. You MUST exclude them.
My tar ball was around 1.5GB in size & I moved the tar ball to another machine which didn’t have WSL activated.
First you have to enable Window Subsystem for linux from Turn Windows Features on or off (If you are not restoring the backup to same Windows Machine). This will ask you to restart your Windows Machine.
If you are going to restore a Ubuntu 18.04 WSL rename launcher.exe to Ubuntu1804.exe & rename your tar ball to rootfs.tar.gz
Open an elevated command prompt & switch to D:\wsl
and just execute, for example “Ubuntu1804.exe”
It will take a while for the installation to complete. As the superuser thread states, it installs and opens the WSL for you. From next time, all you need to do is to start Ubuntu1804.exe & your WSL instance is up and running!
However, I had an issue with the restored instance. It was related to missing /tmp folder. I found a solution for it with nixcraft article.
As many of us know, starting from Windows 10 1803, Microsoft has made Windows subsystem for Linux running in the background even after the console windows are closed.
Definitely this is a gain for those developers who want to have a Linux environment available always, regardless whether the console windows open or not. My requirements towards the same is pretty limited, as I have live Linux systems for almost all my experiments. However, was never less motivated to explore the WSL environments.
Last time I posted a thread about installing and configuring Ubuntu 18.04 WSL and setting up apache, MySQL.
This time we will see how you could enhance your Ubuntu 18.04 WSL with a proper GUI (Desktop environment). I am sure, majority of the Windows users will appreciate a GUI to interact with Linux against the Linux geeks who prefer command line interactions. In addition, few editors like geany or gedit ONLY could be used in a GUI environment.
We will be using Xfce (light weight desktop manager) & XRDP to achieve the GUI requirements on Ubuntu 18.04 WSL
Fire up your Ubuntu 18.04, and update the instance to the latest
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
This could take a while to complete depending upon your internet connection speed
Once the update & upgrade finished, we will install both Xfce & Xrdp in a single session
sudo apt install xfce4 xrdp
The installation should be pretty smooth and within few minutes everything should complete. Not a single attempt from my end failed to install both Xfce or Xrdp
Once the installation is over, we MUST make sure that the XRDP doesn’t use port 3389 which is used by Microsoft RDP (in case if your Windows 10 is already configured for RDP). Hence we will edit the XRDP configuration file with a different port, in our case 3390
sudo vi /etc/xrdp/xrdp.ini
Change the port from 3389 to 3390 & save the file.
Now we will try start the XRDP service
rajesh@rt04:~$ sudo service xrdp start
* Starting Remote Desktop Protocol server [20190509-12:13:49] [DEBUG] Testing if xrdp can listen on 0.0.0.0 port 3390.
[20190509-12:13:49] [DEBUG] Closed socket 6 (AF_INET6 :: port 3390)
[ OK ]
Open Remote Desktop Connection from your Windows Machine & log on!
Supply your WSL username and password. You can use ONE of the existing WSL usernames, in case if your WSL have more than one user.
One of the main issues I found using Xfce4 was few goodies like print screen should be installed by the user prior screenshot capturing could be made (I took screenshots from the remote session & copied them to Windows for this post). This will include adding new keyboard shortcut keys.
We’ll quickly see how to resolve the above said
First install missing “xfce4-screenshooter”
sudo apt install xfce4-screenshooter -y
Once the package installation finished, we will define a new keyboard shortcut that binds “Print Screen” physical button on the keyboard to Xfce4 screenshot shooter package.
Launch Applications -> Settings -> Keyboard
and using the “Add” button, Create a new shortcut. Xfce4 supports different switches to be used with screenshooter package. I’m using the “-f”, for full screen captures.
Be careful when you define the keyboard shortcuts. There is a space between the command and switches, for example
There is a space between xfce4-screenshooter & the switch “-f”. Once after entering the command and pressing OK will ask you to tap the physical keyboard button that you want to bind with the command. Tap “PrtScr” or other button of your choice & that’s all. Your screen capture should work now.
So why one would even need a GUI over WSL. Well, my answer is short. I always dealt with systems those came with GUI. Many business applications could only be installed over a GUI equipped system. Plus, I am not a geek & after hundreds of attempts I cannot deal with a console based editor like VIM. I feel comfortable with geany/gedit than feeling geeky at mind.
Cheers guys, now your WSL have a GUI. Start think about what YOU can’t do with WSL!
Almost a year back I posted about Linux Subsystem for Windows & interesting that I am revisiting the subject in the same period once again. Within an year time loads have changed with the Linux subsystem. Starting from Windows 10 version 1803, once started the Linux Subsystem is available in the background until a reboot! Sounds great?
This time we will see such an enhancement could be utilized on Windows for some extended “developments”, and I will walk you through setting up “WordPress” using WSL. Please note, I am opting “WordPress” as target ONLY for few reasons like:
“WordPress” is developed using PHP
“WordPress” mostly uses MySQL for database
“WordPress” is mostly hosted on LINUX environments
Windows SubSystem for Linux Installation
You must enable “Windows SubSystem for Linux ” through “Turn Windows Features on or off”, after which you will have to reboot your Windows box
Open “Windows Store” and search for Linux, that should bring up many results as seen with the image below
We’ll be using Ubuntu 18.04 LTS this time as I had pretty difficult issues with Pengwin & SUSE. If you are familiar with Linux, Ubuntu is a debian based Linux distribution & widely used for desktop systems. For our limited tests Ubuntu is a right choice.
Total download of Ubuntu 18.04 is around 270MBs & should be installed without giving any troubles.
Once “Ubuntu App” is installed you will be notified and you can immediately “launch” the app.
Ubuntu takes few minutes to finalize the installation & will prompt you to enter a username & password. Make sure you remember the username and password, forgetting may force you to reinstall Ubuntu.
Immediately after setting up a Linux username and password, we will make sure that the Subsystem is upgraded with all new packages.
(While apt & apt-get do almost the same thing, why “apt” is preferred? please read about it here)
Issue the command
$sudo apt upade
Once the update process finishes with the list of packages those could be upgrade, go ahead with upgrading the instance
$sudo apt upgrade
Depending upon the speed of your internet connection this could take a while.
Installation of PHP, Apache, MySQL & phpMyadmin on WSL
$sudo apt install php libapache2-mod-php
It shouldn’t take more than couple of minutes before PHP is installed.
Install Apache2 (Web Server)
Issue the following command at prompt($)
$sudo apt install apache2 or sudo apt-get install apache2
Apache installation should not take more than few minutes & we will see how to configure it bit later.
I faced multiple issues installing MySQL on my Ubuntu based WSL. Few were merely because I was ignoring few pre-requisites like checking for already open ports on my Windows & other were due to lack of adequate amount of experiences with installing software on Linux
After a couple of failed attempts, I landed upon this page, which neatly explains how to use MySQL PPA in the place of Ubuntu’s default repositories for MySQL
I will make some fresh screenshots, that is for recent versions of MySQL installation using the MySQL PPA, because there are few more MySQL versions are supported currently using the same PPA
This will provide you a graphical interface to select correct MySQL version for your requirements
Now, you must run update command once again
$sudo apt update
Now we have a conflict to resolve. As on date, the MySQL 5.7 repository signature is invalid, for the same reason the repository will be disabled. (I don’t know what kind of issues this could produce, so not taking any risks). Next step we will get a valid signature for the disabled repository and re-enable it
Make sure the key that you want to resign is fed in correct. You MUST insure that the command completes successfully.
As we have enabled the repository by getting the new key, we can proceed to next step.
We will force the udpate process once again
$sudo apt update
You should get a notice that 1 package could be upgraded. So we will go ahead with upgrade.
$sudo apt upgrade
This will auto start the configuration window, all you need is to select ok and proceed
Make sure there are no new packages after the setup by issuing
$sudo apt update
Now we can start installing the MySQL 5.7 Server. Please note, if you already have an instance of MySQL running on your Windows, the port 3306 will be in use (unless custom ports are used) & you WILL never able to complete the MySQL installation on WSL. Many undocumented errors will stop the MySQL installation, apparently without giving you the least ideas of what went wrong. So, make sure that the MySQL server is stopped and the port is not listening to port 3306. I don’t know another way to address this situation.
Issue the command
$sudo apt install mysql-server
You will be prompted for MySQL root account. I suggest using the same password across this particular setup so that you will not mess them up later stages.
Confirm the MySQL root password
That completes the MySQL 5.7 Server installation.
Now, let us try to start the MySQL 5.7 Server service.
MySQL 5.7 service is started now. So we can proceed to installing phpmyadmin, MySQL manipulation software.
As we are using Apache2 as web server, make the selection by tapping the spacebar and Ok
You will be asked whether the database for phpmyadmin should be configured, You should select Yes, unless you want to do it later.
You will be asked to provide the a password now, that is for the phpmyadmin, use the same MySQL root password here (you can use a new password, just to avoid confusion, I use the same password everywhere)
You have to confirm the password.
Now you will be asked to enter the MySQL administrator(root) password, supply it
Confirm & wait for the phpmyadkin to complete the installation
Installation will notify you about Apache not being running, you can ignore the notice.
Now we will start the Apache Server. Couple of things you should take care with Apache & I will try to list few of them below:
As the WSL runs as another software on Windows, it is bind to experience conflicts. For example, if you already have IIS server listening to port 80, without changing the port information for Apache, will not able to start the server until the ports information is corrected within the Apache configuration file.
If you already have MS SQL server installed with reporting, the reporting engine listens to port 80, so even if you would stop or disable the IIS/WWP services, there is a possibility that port conflicts will arise. This will also prompt you to alter the default port mentioned in the Apache configuration file
So let us see how we are going to address such conflicts:
Edit the Apache ports configuration file
$sudo vi /etc/apache2
I opted for port 8088 (You can choose a port that is NOT used by Windows. Issue netstat -aon to get a list of ports open/listening on Windows from CMD
100% sure that you are going get presented with an annoying notice “ Protocol not available: AH00076: Failed to enable APR_TCP_DEFER_ACCEPT” which is easily addressable.
We will edit the apache configuration file to address this issue
issue the command
$sudo vi /etc/apache2/apache2.conf
& add “AcceptFilter http none” by the end of the file.
Save the configuration file & restart the Apache service.
As we have completed all the installations and managed to start the services successfully after fixing the configuration files, it is time to reboot.
WSL unfortunately doesn’t let you use “init 0”, or “init 6” to shutdown or restart the instance, instead you must use the Windows Services MMC for the same.
This will close all open Ubuntu “app” windows. You can restart the Ubuntu from the app list.
Once Ubuntu restarted, let us start the services
$sudo service apache2 start
$sudo service mysql start
Once the services are started, we will try phpmyadmin. As I mentioned already, I have set the port 8088 for Apache, hence I can access the phpmyadmin from the link http://localhost:8088/phpmyadmin
You can safely ignore the warnings, as the current version of phpmyadmin we installed from Ubuntu repos have certain conflicts with PHP 7.2
“WordPress” is one of the leading CMS (Content Management Systems) with unlimited possibilities. Recently we switched our decade long joomla based corporate website to “WordPress” & after few days of interactions with the technology, I feel I would never look anywhere else.
Issue the command
This will download the latest “WordPress” to your home folder
Now we have to extract the downloaded file to right htdoc root. We are talking about the default configurations available with apache configuration files. Hence the wordpress should be extracted to ‘/var/www/hmtl/’ folder, which is a protected path. We’ll change the folder permissions temporarily to facilitate the extracting
$sudo chown 777 -R /var/www
now switch to ‘/var/www/html/’
Issue the command
$tar -xvzf /home/rajesh//latest.tar.gz
NB: Replace the pathname, please
Now we will create a new database for the “WordPress” using phpmyadmin
Create a new MySQL user
Give the newly created user database privileges, in my case, I created a new datbase called “intranet”.
Set all privileges. On a production environment, YOU are expected to set them wisely.
As all set with the database, we will install “WordPress” now
Access the link (please changed according to your setups)
Now we have a problem, “WordPress” installation cannot write to “wp-config.php” file. This is due to linux file/folder permissions. Hence we will again change the permissions over ‘/var/www/’ folder
$sudo chmod 777 -R /var/www
Now, go back to the previous page, furnish the details and “WordPress” should happily move ahead. Run the installation
That completes what we tried to achieve. “WordPress” running successfully from a WSL environment.
Now, it is time to ask the questions like “Why so much pain, when we can achieve the entire “WordPress” thing on Windows?”
Well, primarly “WordPress” performs better on Linux enviorment (personal observation), second & most important for me. I just love learning something new everyday. You are welcome!
Microsoft has added WSL with it’s Server 2016 (Version 1803) & the vision is pretty clear. Microsoft “wants” to provide a LINUX environment within Windows so that in the future, a separate LINUX Server requirement will NOT truly hurt the customers. Currently the WSL is NOT equipped with desktops/GUI & Pengwin like initiatives are sure making traction. If my guess will NOT go wrong, soon Windows Servers will be running “Linux” side by side & those Linux Servers are going to be as good as physical/Virtualized. We’ll wait eagerly, together.
We are using Oracle applications R12 12.0.6 with JDK 6.0 while most of the clients are using JRE 7/8 based on different business requirements (With full knowledge that there would be unexpected results due to the compiled versions). We’ve observed a peculiar issue with the JRE applet once after the upgrade to Windows 10 version 1803. The Java applet started showing too small fonts while launched from displays with high DPI resolutions.
Digging in brought me to the following discussion:
Although there are multiple recommendations, for EBS environment, Please follow the below instructions:
Launch the JAVA applet by opening a forms based module.
Open task manager and locate “Java(TM) Platform…”, right click and open properties. This will open the properties for “jp2launcher.exe”. Click on “Compatibility” and click on “Change high DPI settings”. Now check “Override high DPI scaling behavior. Scaling performed by:” to “Application”. Refer the image for more details.
Once the changes are made to the properties of the executable, restart the box. It could be specific case, the changes were not applied until a restart for me.
Although it fixes the font scaling issues, the toolbar area of the Oracle forms are remains scaled with pretty small icons. I am yet to find out a fix for this minor annoyance. May be quite soon.
Windows 10 gets more interesting day after day. I feel like Microsoft is slowly helping my HUGE beasty desktop machines to start looking like a MOBILE PHONE, well enough said.
One of the latest issues with Windows 10 version 1803 (build: 17134.81) is, one cannot add the .NET Framework 3.5 feature using “Turn Windows features…”, the attempts start reporting you are not connected to internet, which is not true (Microsoft should grow up)
So if you are looking for a quick solution to the said, don’t worry, Microsoft has truly messed up documentations available here:
Our Oracle application R12 (12.0.6) instance has JDK 6 environment & We don’t have any plans to migrate to any recent versions of Oracle Application those are supported by later Java environments.
Almost all users those use Oracle applications are using JRE for many other engineering programs (Calculations programs by Vendors) & frequent updates of the JRE happens automatically at the user ends. We have a significant crowd that is still using JRE 1.6_20 as base JRE, who seldom have the following issue(s) discussed below.
Over Windows 10, Internet Explorer 11 fails to load HTML pages properly & many times after the logon to the application, the HTML menu page is loaded in the explorer, leaving a 4-5 white space lines. Refer the image below
Basically this issue is observed with boxes those have latest JRE (x86) installed and used with parameter -Djava.vendor=”Sun Microsystems Inc.”
Oracle blogs strictly says, Compatibility view for Oracle applications R12 shouldn’t be enabled for Internet Explorer 11. I have tried enabling the Compatibility view for the Oracle applications, without any positive changes.
As a last resort, I reset the Internet Explorer 11
and after restarting the computer, Oracle Application HTML pages started loading correctly, without leaving white spaces between the IE Window and application top frame.
To be very frank, though I started using Windows 10 from the Technical Preview days & was an insider for a long time. After each build, one of the best things I loved about Windows 10 was it’s ability to identify and install the best drivers (Occasionally requiring manufacturer drivers for additional enhancements (Sound, VGA, Wifi)) even for pretty old hardware components.
With the Creators update, started reading many frustrated users complaining about missing drivers which were not so loud till build 1603. Out of curiosity, I found that almost four devices were not recognized for my almost 5 years old work laptop, a Dell Latitude E6420.
Throughout my Windows 10 experiences, I hardly bothered to find Windows 10 specific drivers from DELL support because my product is not supported for Windows 10 & the latest available are for Windows 8. Well, almost all the executables by DELL are packed in a different way that Intel drivers & extracting the packages using 7-zip didn’t always let me point the device manager to extracted files locations and pick correct drivers. Hence, I just run the executable & take a chance with almost all missing drivers.
This time after patching the way mentioned above (Which can break your system, be warned & trust me, I know what I am doing, so just lost a whole partition 2 days back) I found one item under “Other devices” & it read “MAP SMS/MMS”. I tried to locate the hardware details, which has only a long string that read something more than mere google searches could help, until I came across this post today.
2nd page of the article, user vkgupta suggests to remove connected Bluetooth devices to see whether this “Other device” disappears after the unpair process.
I unpaired my LG G3 & the “Other device” disappeared. Paired it again, letting the Other device to reappear with a ? mark once again. So, if you are another someone who is trying to “find” a proper driver for your SMS/MMS other device, give this trick a try.